University of California, Los Angeles
Department of Philosophy
PhD, 2014
Schenectady, New York, United States of America
  •  330
    Music and Vague Existence
    Res Philosophica 94 (4): 437-449. 2017.
    I explain a tension between musical creationism and the view that there is no vague existence. I then suggest ways to reconcile these views. My central conclusion is that, although some versions of musical creationism imply vague existence, others do not. I discuss versions of musical creationism held by Jerrold Levinson, Simon Evnine, and Kit Fine. I also present two new versions. I close by considering whether the tension is merely an instance of a general problem raised by artifacts, both abs…Read more
  •  285
    Why can’t I change Bruckner’s Eighth Symphony?
    Philosophical Studies 177 (3): 805-824. 2020.
    Musical works change. Bruckner revised his Eighth Symphony. Ella Fitzgerald and many other artists have made it acceptable to sing the jazz standard “All the Things You Are” without its original verse. If we accept that musical works genuinely change in these ways, a puzzle arises: why can’t I change Bruckner’s Eighth Symphony? More generally, why are some individuals in a privileged position when it comes to changing musical works and other artifacts, such as novels, films, and games? I give a …Read more
  •  110
    Salmon on Hob and Nob
    Philosophical Studies 165 (1): 213-220. 2013.
    Nathan Salmon appeals to his theory of mythical objects as part of an attempt to solve Geach’s Hob–Nob puzzle. In this paper I argue that, even if Salmon’s theory of mythical objects is correct, his attempt to solve the puzzle is unsuccessful. I also refute an original variant of his proposal. The discussion indicates that it is difficult (if not impossible) to devise a genuine solution to the puzzle that relies on mythical objects
  •  94
    Abstract Creationism and Authorial Intention
    Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 74 (2): 129-137. 2016.
    Abstract creationism about fictional characters is the view that fictional characters are abstract objects that authors create. I defend this view against criticisms from Stuart Brock that hitherto have not been adequately countered. The discussion sheds light on how the number of fictional characters depends on authorial intention. I conclude also that we should change how we think intentions are connected to artifacts more generally, both abstract and concrete.
  •  87
    Abstracta Are Causal
    Philosophia 48 (1): 133-142. 2020.
    Many philosophers think all abstract objects are causally inert. Here, focusing on novels, I argue that some abstracta are causally efficacious. First, I defend a straightforward argument for this view. Second, I outline an account of object causation—an account of how objects cause effects. This account further supports the view that some abstracta are causally efficacious.
  •  28
    Fiction and indeterminate identity
    Analysis 80 (2): 221-229. 2020.
    In ‘Against fictional realism’ Anthony Everett argues that fictional realism leads to indeterminate identity. He concludes that we should reject fictional realism. Everett’s paper and much of the ensuing literature does not discuss what exactly fictional characters are. This is a mistake. I argue that some versions of abstract creationism about fictional characters lead to indeterminate identity, and that some versions of Platonism about fictional characters lead only to indeterminate reference.…Read more
  •  22
    A Problem for All of Creation
    Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 76 (1): 98-101. 2018.
  •  9
    Abstract and Concrete Products: A Response to Cray
    Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 75 (3): 292-296. 2017.
  •  6
    Ratio, EarlyView.